Many of the biggest automakers, including General Motors, Ford, and Toyota, experienced declining sales thanks to the poor weather. But in rain or shine, car sales must go on, and automakers must compete for the top spots in each segment. A dark horse, Nissan, managed to steal the show with a number of top-sellers. Bad winter storms in many parts of the country have kept auto sales down for the past few months, and it appears that February continued this trend. Here were the best-selling cars by segment last month:
The world's best-selling electric vehicle was also a best-seller in the U.S. last month. It is usually in close competition every month with the Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrid, and February was no exception. The Leaf beat out the Volt by just 215 cars. But while Volt sales were declining, Leaf's sales skyrocketed by 118 percent, giving it a clear advantage. The Nissan Leaf runs solely on electricity and can travel 84 miles before needing to recharge. (Note: Sales numbers for the Tesla Model S are not available.)
Sales are down for the Nissan Versa, but that didn't stop this model from leading the subcompact market for the month of February. As the least expensive car in the U.S., this popular car is available for as little as $11,990. Slightly more expensive competitors didn't come close. The next best-selling subcompact car was the Chevrolet Sonic, a car that we would recommend much more highly than the Versa.
The small car segment is extremely competitive and is no longer a slam dunk win for any one car. In the compact car segment, the redesigned Toyota Corolla beat out its long-time rival, the Honda Civic, last month. In fact, the Civic didn’t even achieve second place. That title belonged to the Chevrolet Cruze, which saw sales jump almost 22 percent from the same month last year. This second place finish was interesting, considered the Cruze is long overdue for a redesign.
Sometimes the underdog actually does win. The Nissan Altima topped sales of both the Toyota Camry and Honda Accord last month. Sales were up over 11 percent for the popular car, while the Camry dropped 7.3 percent and the Accord fell 12.1 percent. The Nissan Altima's claim to fame is its excellent fuel economy, which tops out at 27/38 mpg city/highway.
We drove the all-new Impala a few months ago, and we thought it improved significantly from the previous generation. Finally, it features desirable technology, a nice ride, and a comfortable interior. Compared to the competition out there, we aren't surprised the Impala topped sales in its segment. The outdated Ford Taurus and Nissan Maxima came in well below the Impala's sales. But surprisingly, the nicely-equipped Toyota Avalon fell almost 47 percent.
The "cute-ute" segment is more popular than ever with consumers right now. Despite a number of recalls, the Ford Escape is selling quite well. Although sales are down 4 percent, it still managed to reach top sales in its segment. Other close competitors include the Chevrolet Equinox, Honda CR-V, and Nissan Rogue. We will see if the Escape continues its sales momentum as new small crossovers are released.
Among larger crossovers and SUVs, the Ford Explorer was the winner once again for February. Sales for the model were down over 22 percent, but that didn't stop the three-row crossover from snagging the win. The Toyota Highlander came in as a close second, selling 12,052 units. Other top-sellers included the Subaru Outback and Chevrolet Traverse.
Although minivans aren't as popular as they once were, buyers have not completely ruled out this segment of the auto marketplace. The Dodge Grand Caravan beat out the Honda Odyssey to take back the top spot among minivans. Sales were up 1 percent over last year for this model. The Odyssey took second place with sales of 8,945 while the Chrysler Town & Country came in third with 8,696 sales.
In the perennial battle between BMW and Mercedes-Benz, BMW's compact cars won the top car spot by a landslide. BMW beat out the top-selling car from Mercedes-Benz, the E-Class series, by a whopping 3,520 units. A surprising third place was the all-new Infiniti Q50, which replaces the G sedan line. Audi only managed to sell 2,216 units of the A4, its top-selling car.
No surprise here—the Lexus RX is once again the top-selling luxury SUV for the month. Sales were down 18 percent, but it still outsold some of its fiercest competitors. Cadillac's SRX performed quite well with sales of 5,058 units. Acura's MDX also did well, up 55 percent. These models blew out sales of the BMW X3, Audi Q5, and Mercedes-Benz M-Class.
Every month, the sports car race comes down to either the Ford Mustang or Chevrolet Camaro. This last month, Ford won out with 6,410 sales of its historic Mustang. Sales were up only slightly by 6.4 percent from last year. We can't wait to see how sales look when the new 2015 Mustang is released.I hope this information is useful.....